July 7, 2003

Lab Laser Research Wins Prestigious Edward Teller Medal

The American Nuclear Society has awarded the prestigious 2003 Edward Teller Medal to a veteran researcher at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

Laurance J. Suter [pronounced Sutter] is an expert in the design and utilization of hohlraums, the tiny gold containers that hold a laser target as intense X-rays heat it during inertial confinement fusion experiments.

In announcing the award, the American Nuclear Society recognized Suter "for his seminal work on almost all aspects of laser hohlraum physics. During the past 20 years, he has become widely known as one of the world's leading experts on laser hohlraum physics, with contributions on many topics, including X-ray conversion and drive in hohlraums, symmetry control, the impact of pulse shaping on capsule implosion, and development of a wide variety of experimental techniques to verify and improve the computational models."

As the group leader of the Hohlraum Dynamics Group in A/X Division at the Lab, Dr. Suter's work has most recently focused on the understanding and control of laser hohlraum physics at the Lab's National Ignition Facility (NIF). His latest work shows how to further improve the efficiency and yield of potential NIF ignition experiments. His work on hohlraum X-ray physics has also led to the development of novel high efficiency X-ray sources for a variety of other applications.

Reacting to winning, Suter said, "It's great to be part of a laboratory that provides so many opportunities."

The American Nuclear Society also awarded a Teller Medal to Japan's Professor Hideaki Takabe of the Institute of Laser Engineering at Osaka University.

The awards will be officially presented Sept. 10 at the Third International Conference on Inertial Fusion Sciences and Applications (IFSA2003) in Monterey, Calif., where 400 scientists and engineers from all parts of the world will compare notes on the latest research in inertial fusion.

The Edward Teller Medal is named in honor of Dr. Edward Teller, distinguished physicist, Director Emeritus of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Senior Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution. Dr. Teller is recognized worldwide as a pioneer in inertial fusion sciences. The award has been granted to 20 scientists from 10 countries in previous years. It is now under the auspices of the ANS Fusion Energy Division and will be given biannually at the IFSA conferences.

The American Nuclear Society is a not-for-profit, international, scientific and educational organization. ANS has a diverse membership composed of 10,500 engineers, scientists, administrators, and educators who seek to exchange scientific and technical research, encourage scholarship, and disseminate information on nuclear science and technology.

For more information about the Edward Teller Medal, contact ANS Outreach, at (708) 579-8224, or outreach [at] ans.org ( )


Founded in 1952, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is a national security laboratory, with a mission to ensure national security and apply science and technology to the important issues of our time. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration.

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